Sunday, August 30, 2009

It's Time for a Change

I do this every fall. I'm not sure if I have some subconscious association between the leaves falling off the trees and cutting my hair off, but I do it every year. Most of the time it's because my thin, color-treated hair has had all the abuse it can take. Chlorine, sun, and constant ponytails are not friends of my scraggly hair.

I jumped on the 'bob bandwagon' a couple of years ago. Unfortunately the stylist cut the back of my hair in a style that resembled a cross between the bitter trainwreck Kate Gosslin and a shaved Maltese. So I've spent all this time trying to grow it out. I like being able to have a 'Mommytail' to go with my 'Momiform'. Quick and easy-peesy to take the kids to school.

Mommy's hair is looking a little ratty right now, and I don't want anything drastic. Just a little snippy snip to freshen up things.

So I came across this cute picture of Kellie Pickler's hair. No, not the weird asymmetrical copy of Rhianna she had a few years back.

Here it is. Let me know what you think. Yep or Nope?

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Five Tory Burch Must-Haves for the Fall

I've been checking out some of the Tory Burch pieces online and I have to say, she's loving studs this fall. Metal studs that is.

Here are my 5 must-haves:

1)Skinny Cuff Bracelet With Logo Studs
This is purchase #1 for sure! Love it!

2) 'Bombe' Leather Tote in Olive
Dimensions: 14"W x 9"H x 4 1/2"D. Has a zipper top, which I love. I have several bags that are open or have buckles or clasps to do everytime you close them. I've finally learned that just a plain ol' zipper is the best.

3) 'Sable' Bootie in Black. Great 3.75" stacked heel with ruched side. This is such a versatile boot.

4) "Alexandra" Suede Moccasins in Navy . Great 'mom' and errand running shoes. I think the navy would look so smart this fall paired with camel and cream.

5) "Rose" Top in Cocoa Basket Weave. Great sheer layering piece with pleated ruffles.

So that's it. Have you bought or been eyeing any of Tory's Fall Collection? I'm not loving her clothes quite as much this season, but I could go crazy with the shoes and bags. Maybe I need to see them in person, but *sigh* no one in my town carries her line.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Lunch Lady Land

For the past 2 days, I've been a parent volunteer in my daughters' school cafeteria. It's a private school, so they depend greatly on the parents to help out, whether it be in the library, cafeteria, or other places.

Man, I'm tired today. My main job today was to help junior kindergarten and kindergarteners to carry their trays to their seats, help make sandwiches, and cleaning up afterwards. It was so rewarding to meet the students and the girls loved seeing me there.

So now I can't get the Adam Sandler/Chris Farley SNL skit out of my head! Enjoy!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

First Day of School, Part Deux

Well, today was officially the first day of school, and the first day of kindergarten for Sassypants. It went really crying when I left. Her backpack was so big and kept falling off. Everytime I offered to help her carry it, she kept saying, "No, Mommy. I've got it." It was kind of her way of saying, "I'm going to be okay." {Tears}

Bookworm was so excited to be starting 2nd grade. She just went to her classroom and immediately joined in all the fun. At night before bedtime, I always ask "What was your favorite part of the day?" and "What was your least favorite part of the day?" Tonight, Bookworm's favorite part of the day was "going to school", and her least favorite part was "leaving school". So it's suffice to say that she loves school. I hope that she always has a thirst for knowledge. I truly have the belief that if you enjoy reading and learning, you can do anything in your life.

Hope your school year is starting off well. God Bless.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

First Day of School

Nothing much to report here. I'm actually in mourning today because my youngest, Sassypants starts kindergarten tomorrow. It really makes me sad. If you're a mom, you know what I'm talking about.

I particularly worry because of the whole 'mean girl' issues she will eventually encounter in school. Soooo not ready for that! Mean girls are totally different now than when I was in school. Now they can text, email, blog, or twitter about each other. I just want to protect my daughters as long as possible, but I know I have to let them go out in the world too. I know that all I can do is teach them morals the best way I know how, and more importantly, pray for them.

So if you're reading this, please say a little prayer for my girls, and all children starting school this year.

My prayer is.....
Dear Lord,

I ask that you bless and protect my daughters as they start school this year. Place your hedge of protection around the school and the busy street in front of the school (a big concern of mine).

Please guide and strengthen the students, teachers, principal, school workers, and parents. Let them remain safe and in your care while at school. Show the children what kindness is about and help them to reach their fullest academic potential. Open their ears and minds to learn. Teach them to respect their teachers, school workers, and each other.

If there are children in need, whether it be food, clothing, shelter, or someone to talk to, please help us to recognize and help meet those needs. Even though this is not a Christian school, let your love and grace be known.

I pray these things in Christ's name,
Hope you have a great week!

Saturday, August 22, 2009

You Say Tomay-to, I Say Tomah-to

I bought some wonderful local heirloom tomatoes last week, and decided to make a tomato tart recipe that I have made in a few years. I have made up my own recipe based on some of the recipes I'd previously seen. My measurements may not be exact, but seriously, you can't mess up this. There's lots of other things you could add to this recipe to jazz it up.

Dishy Decorator's Tomato Tart


(1) Pillsbury Brand refrigerated pie crust
(1) tablespoon olive oil
(1) clove fresh garlic, finely minced
(3-5)-depending on size --fresh, ripe tomatoes
(2.5) cups shredded mozzarella cheese
(3/4) cup shredded Parmesan cheese
(2) tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
(1/4-1/2) teaspoon salt
(1/4) teaspoon freshly ground pepper
(1/2) teaspoon granulated sugar


~Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

~While oven is preheating, slice tomatoes and put on paper towels. You'll need to change paper towels several times. Getting the moisture out of the tomatoes will prevent the crust from getting soggy.

~Roll out 1 of the pie crusts from the Pillsbury package and place into a pie or tart pan. I used a 10 inch glass pie pan.

~Poke holes in bottom of crust. Using a pastry brush, brush olive oil on pie crust. Evenly spread clove of garlic on top of olive oil.

~I usually use pie weights for prebaking pie shells, but not for this one. I just pop this in the oven for about 10 minutes.

~Take partially baked pie crust out of oven.

~Sprinkle all of mozzarella cheese and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese in pie crust.

~Arrange tomatoes on top of cheese. I work from the outside in. On this recipe, I alternated the yellow and red tomatoes.

~Sprinkle tomatoes with salt, pepper and sugar.

~Put the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese on tomatoes.

~Bake 15 minutes and check edges of pie crust. If they seem to be getting too brown, cover just the edges with foil. Continue baking another 10 minutes or less until cheese is melted and pie crust is a golden brown.

~Take tomato tart out of oven and before serving, add chopped fresh basil on top.

This is great for brunches or served with a green salad on the side. Enjoy!

Friday, August 21, 2009

5 For Friday

I've decided to make the "5 For Friday" a regular post. You were losing some sleep over this, weren't you? he he. Usually by Friday, I'm not in the mood to blog, so hopefully I can come up with different topics of interest. It may be 5 favorites or 5 least favorites, or even my 5 favorite candy bars. We'll just see where it goes.....

5 Biggest Design Mistakes People Make
Note: This is only my opinion and not the Gospel, so no hate mail please......

Using fake ivy anywhere, but especially on bookshelves. I had a wonderful, experienced (ahem, 75 year old) designer tell me, "Ivy doesn't grow on bookshelves." If you look at design magazines, you'll notice you're not going to see silk, fake plants in the fabulously designed rooms. It's just not natural. They're dust catchers, and look cheap.

Speaking of fake plants and ivy.....please for the love of God, get that ivy, fake grapes, baskets and tipped over wine bottles off the top of your kitchen cabinets. I'm all about merchandising, but let's take down the Italian picnic. Again, another dirt and grime catcher.

Buying a whole matching bedroom, living room, or dining room set. A room looks so much more interesting when everything isn't so matchy-matchy. If you happen to have a whole 'set' of something, break it up put a piece in another room. Don't be afraid to mix things up. See how boring this room is.... matching sofa and loveseat, matching tables, matching pictures, matching lamps, and that dreadful silk tree. Symmetry is good, but too much is B-O-R-I-N-G!

Displaying too many pictures. I may be stepping into dangerous territory with this one;-) I have kids, so I love me some pictures. But I've been to houses where family portraits are on every wall, on every table....and the most atrocious---on the dining room walls. I'm not sure how the Southern tradition of having a picture of the mother and newborn in matching white gowns came about, but it has no place in the dining room. I'm just sayin..... I was taught in design school, that personal portraits belong in personal spaces (i.e. the bedrooms, family room, and hallways to the bedrooms). I think a middle ground is good. A grouping of beautiful framed portraits on a chest or on a wall is tasteful, just not on every table and every wall. Here's a great example of a happy medium. Fiona Newell Weeks, designer

Having too many little tschotkes in one place.

Don't be afraid to edit your room accessories. Your design will make more of a statement with one big piece or a collection of similar pieces. When a collection is scattered all around the room, it loses it's impact. For example, if you have a collection of plates or platters, display them together on a shelf or hang them together on a wall. Designer: Jackye Lanham

So what are your biggest design pet peeves???

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Mama's Got 'Em Too

No, I'm not a freakin' vulcan. These is side one of my allergy tests. Turns out I'm allergic to everything except black pepper and garlic. I'm not kidding you. Everything else came out positive. Apparently, I have a big problem with yeast. I'm a big honkin' yeast ball. So between finding out this and the corn and milk allergies with Bookworm and Sassypants, I'm at a loss to what we can eat.

I went to the health food store today and bought $168.00 worth of nothing. I have always bought some organic things, but to buy everything natural and without chemicals is mucho expensive.

We had lots of crying today, wanting our old foods. If any of you have suggestions, please let me know. I'm at a loss.

The only thing this 'Dishy Decorator' will be dishing out is garlic water sprinkled with black pepper. Lovely deliciousness.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Corn and Milk Be Gone!!!

The girls and I loaded up yesterday and went to take Bookworm to the allergist for her first allergy test. When we were checking in with the receptionist, she asked why I didn't schedule both Bookworm and Sassypants appointments on the same day. I was thinking, "Well, sweet dear.....possibly because when I asked that very question 4 months ago, I was told only one child at a time!" But anyway, she suggested that the both do their testing together. Great, no problem.....knock it out in one day.

So we go back and meet with the allergist. She starts asking about how the girls were fed as infants (bottle vs. breast), any medical issues (lots), etc. Based on both girls' tummy issues and some behavioral issues that Sassypants is having, the allergist said, "I can tell you right now that they both have corn and milk allergies." She goes on to say, "In fact, if I saw Sassypants in the mall, I'd stop you dead in your tracks and tell you this." Wow! This is without the scratch test. This kind of floored me.

This allergist is a former pediatrician that became an allergist and has done extensive research on allergies and behavior. She spent almost 2 hours EDUCATING me. The things that she told me were medically based, and at last I have some answers. I just have to come up with a PLAN now. How in the heck am I going to feed them.....especially when we travel? It's not like they're infants, and I can start from scratch. These monkeys have developed a LOVE for these foods. In fact, the allergist said children usually crave the very foods to which they're allergic. Just like us women crave chocolate and carbs at that delightful time of month.

If any of you have children with allergies, do you have suggestions, books or websites that you could share?

Now I'm off to get poked and scratched.....

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Allergy Smellergy

Bookworm (age 7) is having allergy testing today. It's going to be a 3-4 hour process between the scratch tests, meeting with the doctor, etc. Sassypants (age 5) goes tomorrow and I go next Tuesday. Since moving to Missouri, our allergies have worsened. Maybe I'm allergic to the Midwest, and need to move back South ASAP. Do you think the allergist would write an order for that?

The girls haven't had any 'official' testing done, so I'm interested to see what we find out. It's been 16 years since I had mine done. I'll just have a "country-come-to-town" moment if I'm allergic to chocolate. he he

Please say a little prayer for my sweet baby girls. This is a picture of Bookworm when she was a baby, and this is how she feels about seeing an allergist AND wearing bunny ears. Oh, what we do to our poor babies....

Monday, August 17, 2009

If Walls Could Talk

Most people think that interior designers lead glamorous lives where we hop on a private plane to New York, point to a fabric with a manicured finger, take a sip of champagne, and voila...the whole house is done! Oh dear, if it was only that simple or that glamorous.
When I lived in Memphis, I interned with a well-known and published designer. My internship involved the usual intern things like submitting designs to magazines, filing, making phone calls, and ordering fabrics and furnishings. I also got to move furniture, blow up balloons for parties, babysit clients' kids while they shopped, and the best part.....clean toilets. Sounds uber-glamorous, huh?

I learned a lot during that time though. I realized that people put a great deal of trust in you when you come into their houses and make them a "home". Once there, you find out more dirt and intrigue than you ever will see on reality tv. Trust's scary. If only walls or (in my case), a designer could talk.

Speaking of walls....da da ching! So cheesy, sorry. One of the biggest requests I get from clients and friends are paint color suggestions. Here are a few of my tried-and-true favorites:

Benjamin Moore HC-95 Sag Harbor Gray
(This is a beautiful green-gray. I have my kitchen painted in this color and never tire of it.)

House Beautiful magazine

Benjamin Moore-Dragon's Breath #1547
This is a wonderful deep charcoal with
green undertones. I have a guest bathroom painted this color and it's like a warm cocoon.

The Seattle Times

Benjamin Moore-Danville Tan

(Cabinet color in this picture)

House Beautiful

Favorite Trim Colors

Benjamin Moore -White Dove and Navajo White

Sunday, August 16, 2009


The past few weeks I've been perusing magazines and websites for the latest and greatest things to wear for fall. I do this every season, thinking I need new boots for the fall or new sandals for the spring. As a designer, I'm naturally drawn to beautiful (and most of the time, expensive) things, whether it be furnishings or clothing.

So as I started getting my closet ready for fall, I looked in there and thought, "Why can't I just be content with what I have? Who am I trying to keep up with? Who am I trying to impress?" I really do have all that I need in terms of clothing and accessories. Yeah, I'm sure I'll buy a few things this fall/winter, but I just need to appreciate and be content with what I have.

In the book "Lists to Live By" by Alice Gray, Steve Stephens and John Van Diest, there are some quotes about contentment that I'd like to share:

"Contentment makes poor men rich; discontentment makes rich men poor."
-Benjamin Franklin

"He who is concerned with what he has would not be content with what he would like to have."

"I am always content with what has happened, for I know that what God chooses is better than what I choose."

Saturday, August 15, 2009

It's a Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Today we're off to take Bookworm and Sassypants to a Pool/Birthday Party. It's a beautiful day today, and I am trying to soak in every ounce of warmth and sunshine before it starts getting cold. I'm just not ready for snow and mittens and driving in the ice. So we're off to enjoy these last days of summer. Have a fabulous, relaxing day.

Friday, August 14, 2009

5 For Friday

I always love getting ideas or reviews from friends and other blogs about what products they like. Here are this Friday's 5 Favorites:

1) Diet Pepsi- drink way too many of them. It's my morning coffee.

2) Latisse- LOVE it. It's been almost a month since I started using it, and my lashes have quadrupled in length and thickness

3) Quaker Fiber & Omega-3 - Dark Chocolate Chunk Granola Bars- They're yummy and satisfy my 'crack-like' addiction to chocolate.

4)Lancome Hynose Mascara- you might can tell--I have a slight obsession with lashes.

5) Dermaquest ZinClear SPF 30-The only facial sunscreen that doesn't break me out and doesn't look chalky or greasy. I has such a light texture, that I wear it every single day of the year.

So that's it. What are some of your favorites or 'must haves'?

Real Housewives of Atlanta

These girls are CA-RAA-ZEE. Crazy as road lizards. No joke!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

I Heart Orange

I think there's something with redheads....we all tend to be drawn to the color orange. Maybe because we can usually wear orange and pull it off without looking like a pumpkin (well, most of the time). I find that a lot of redheads use orange and warm colors in their homes as well.

Here is my formal living room. As you can see...I heart orange. I have silk tafetta drapes and a commissioned painting in which I specifically asked to have LOTS of orange! I'd call my look-"New Orleans' influenced classic konked over the head with a contemporary hammer".

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Just a Little About Me.....

To tell all about myself seems a bit like writing an obituary or something, so for now I'll just give you the facts:

~ I was born in Georgia, raised in Tennessee and moved 38 times before I graduated high school. Speaking of 38---that's my age. Yikes. I said it.
~I got married when I was 21 to a preacher's son--bad, bad boy. Only married for 2 years.
~I worked in surgery and met my now husband there. He asked for my telephone number for 4 months, but I was still getting over the divorce and
besides, I didn't want to date one of those stinkin' cheatin' doctors like the ones I worked with;-)
~We saw each other out one night, and he asked me out. I knew there was something special about him, so I said yes. (I'll tell the story of our 1st date later).
~Within a few weeks of dating, we talked about getting married. Everybody thought we were crazy, but that was 13 years ago. So there doubters!
~We've lived in Chattanooga, Memphis, Birmingham, AL, Hattiesburg, MS and now Missouri.
~We have 2 wonderful daughters. Our 7 year old "Bookworm" is utterly brilliant. She has always been ahead of the game....she weighed 10 lbs., 12 oz. ! "Sassypants" is 5 years old and gives me a gray hair every day. She is spirited and hilarious. To give you a little insight into her sassiness....Sassypants fell into a tank of stingrays at the aquarium. Yep...right in....head first.
~When Doc Lancelot (DL) was in his residency in Memphis, I went back to school at University of Memphis and got a bachelor's degree in interior design. Big change from the medical field, huh?
~Memphis was an exciting and fun time for us. I made lifelong friends, got pregnant with Bookworm and got another degree.
~I'm having a hard time being away from the South (yes, I capitalize South). I miss lots of things...too many to mention in one post.
~I have to have creative outlets or I go beserk. I love floral arranging, photography, entertaining, cooking--basically anything where I can use my hands and have no defined boundaries.
~I LOVE to cook, but it's harder now that I have the kiddos. I really miss cooking gourmet meals or having really big dinner parties. Hopefully one day, I can rekindle my cooking passion.
~Most of all, I consider myself blessed beyond measure. I have a husband that makes me laugh everyday and totally 'gets' me. I could never imagine, or would want to be with anyone else. He gave me the 2 greatest gifts in the two girls. They look so much like him it's crazy. There's no denying whose 'my baby daddy'. I was just a big fat uterus for his super genes, but I wouldn't have it any other way!

More later.....

Loving The New Layout

So, I'm starting in the blogging world, and don't know what the heck I'm doing. But as in real life, it doesn't matter if you know what you're doing, just as long as you look good, right?

I was over at My Blonde Reality (and we all know she looks fab all the time;-)), and I saw how great her new and improved blog page looked. She recommended Danielle from Girls Night Out Custom Blog Designs. I contacted her via email yesterday, and in less than a DAY....I have a spectacular looking blog site. Danielle spent A LOT of time getting the look just right, and far exceeded my expectations! I am so excited and hope you go and check out her site and see the other great work she has done. Her prices are unbelievable, especially in comparison to her talent and professionalism.

Here are the other places you can find Danielle-- Danielle of Florida Brides Blog--this site makes me want to have another wedding (to Doc Lancelot, of course).
Her personal blog is here Just Dandy. Can you tell that I think she's the BOMB?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Blog Bug Has Officially Bitten......

I admit it....I have stalked blogs for a while now. It's been such a great outlet for me since moving away from the South. I read about Lilly Pulitzer, SEC football, sweet tea, etc. So I decided to join the bandwagon. I'm sure this is going to be more a journal for me, and I have no intention of trying to get 1,000 followers or anything. I just want to a way to express my thoughts (crazy as they may be sometimes). So if you're reading this, bear with me. It's going to be a little bumpy for a while.